Australia’s Nature Coast - Great Australian Nature

Great Australian Nature

Our nature credentials are impressive!

Book ended by heritage listed Glass House Mountains (Daki Comon, or “stone standing up” to our Aboriginal peoples)  in the south and Lady Elliot Island on the fringes of the Great Barrier Reef in the north, with two UNESCO biospheres sitting side by side, 3 world heritage marine parks on our doorstep, the only “other” Everglades in the world and more National Parks than any other region in Queensland – not to mention Fraser Island (K’Gari or “paradise”) the world’s largest sand island - you begin to realise why nature is part of our DNA.    

It’s everywhere and we have the best experiences to get you right in to it!

Ambassadors / Local Representatives

Glass House Mountains, Coolum and Pomona

Just 40 minutes north of Brisbane airport, this family of ranges are where you’ll get your “fitness” on, big time. Rising majestically out of the earth as if to welcome you to the Sunshine Coast, are our Glass House Mountains (Daki Comon or “stone standing up” to our Aboriginal people), a family of 13 mountains and steeped in dreamtime stories. Experentia will have you up at least 6 of these peaks in one day so this is not for the faint hearted. Wild Horse,  Beerburrum (mother of the mountains) and  Ngungun, and, for those of you with energy left,  the northern family– Ninderry, Cooroora and Coolum (known as the headless mountain to our Aboriginal people). A great work out complimented by fabulous views and a must do for anyone wanting to understand more about our dreamtime stories.

Glass House Mountains and Caloundra

Overnight on the Sunshine Coast and next day prepare to meet the daddy of these mountains, Mt Tibrogargan.  Kayak the Mathew Flinders trail along scenic Bells Creek in to Glass House Mountains (Daki Comon)  territory, before heading up the second largest of the Glass House Mountains, Mt Tibrogargan, the father of the Glass House Mountains.
 

 

 

 

 

If an on the water-based nature experience is more what you had in mind, how about a half day paddle in to Pumicestone Passage in a Cruisey Kayak?  You’ll paddle to the tip of deserted Bribie Island, a tranquil paradise surrounded by white sandy beach, as far as the eye can see. Here, our trained guide will help you to reconnect with your 3 most dynamic energies – thought, speech and action.  We can’t tell you how (that would give it away) but suffice to say, this little tour, will absolutely set you up for the rest of your visit.

 

 

And have we got more great ideas for you.


Just 30 minutes north, tucked away in the Cooloola (or place of thin cypress pines) section of the Great Sandy National Park and enveloped by the Great Sandy Biosphere is Noosa Everglades, one of only two everglade systems in the world. You’re now entering “mirror of rivers” land, with its beautiful lakes, eucalypt forests and gorgeous sunsets.  As well as more than 44% of all Australian bird species, this part of the world is steeped in Aboriginal legend stretching back to “Fraser Island” (K’Gari).   The island was named after Eliza Fraser, but your guide will tell you more. Kanu Kapers offers an overnight, 2 or 3 day guided kayak tours deep in to the Noosa Everglades wilderness or, if you’re even more intrepid than that, how about a self guided overnight or 3 day self guided kayak tour with Discovery Group or Kanu Kapers?  Unlike its famous Florida namesake, there are absolutely no alligators or crocodiles in this river system, but you may just see a kangaroo that looks like its walking on water.

 

 

Rainbow Beach and Great Beach Drive

Beach horse riding no longer exists in Queensland, except, of course at Rainbow Beach!

There’s no better feeling than at full canter on a beach!   Don’t worry about cars, this route is strictly horses only!  And, it’s one of the most beautiful ways to commune with our colourful cliffs, sand blows and beaches. Rainbow Beach Horse Riding is a great way to experience this beautiful stretch of beach and, for the more expert rider, what about cooling off in the water with your horse.

For those seeking an iconic all-Australian horse experience, why not try the region’s new Goomboorian Campdraft Ride and learn the art of working with cattle.  This one takes 5 days, but its filled with spectacular scenery, beautifully prepared food and amazing horses!

 

 

But you can’t come to a World Surfing Reserve and not learn to surf!  Come on, it’s an Australian must do! While you’re in Rainbow Beach, why not learn to surf with Epic Ocean Adventures. Rainbow Beach has Australia’s longest left hand surf break, which means it’s one of the safest places in Australia to take your first surfing steps! Alternatively, sea kayaking alongside dolphins, turtles, mantas and in season, whales, provides great photo opportunities, not to mention the wonderful views of the mainland from the sea. 

 

And, a little tip from us...

 

 

At night, the stars from Carlo Sand Blow are so close you’ll think you can touch them! You can’t, but for stargazers – you need to go here!!   For the rest of us, it’s definitely worth a visit but maybe take a torch (and a trusted local) to light your way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

For a river kayaking experience, you might like to consider Mary Valley Country, nestled in lush green rolling hills, National Parks and Forest Reserves. The Mary Valley River (Moocoolaba or “meeting of waters” to our first people) is home to a wide range of rare fish, plants and animal species including the Mary River Cod, Mary River Turtle, the giant barred frog, the cascade tree frog and, the extremely rare Coxen’s fig parrot and the lungfish and Ride on Mary can point you in the direction of all the best river spots along the river. 

 

 

If walking is more your thing, Tropical Treks can guide you through some of Mary Valley Country’s top spots to experience these vulnerable species as well as highlight some of the best “camera-worthy” views that not even the locals can take you to!

If a restful country sleepover is what you’re dreaming of – Mary Valley Views, Amamoor Lodge and Melawondi Springs Retreat could be just what you’re looking for.    Ask them about their country style breakfasts!   You’ll thank us for the tip!

Hervey Bay and Fraser Island

Hervey Bay is Australia’s whale watching capital. In season (July to November), at least 25,000 whales migrate along the east coast of Australia, stopping in at Hervey Bay to replenish themselves, and their newborn calves, before starting the long journey home.  Whales in Hervey Bay are best described in Crocodile Dundee speak -   “that’s not a whale experience, THIS, is a whale experience”!   The whales are so comfortable in their Hervey Bay stopover that they consistently reward us with much closer, more intimate interactions than anywhere else in Australia.  It’s all due to the extreme lengths that the Hervey Bay Whale fleet have gone to, to ensure a safe and protected passage for these majestic and much loved creatures! So committed to the whales are our whale fleet, that they each donate a percentage of your ticket price to whale conservation.  So by visiting, you’re helping out too!

For those seeking a more interactive experience, why not try swimming with whales? Be prepared though - it's nature - and in Hervey Bay we respect the whales' choice fo swimming companion!

 

 

And you can’t come to Hervey Bay without immersing yourself in Fraser Island (K’Gari or “paradise”), the world’s largest sand island! Not for you a “scenic drive” although it is a beautiful way to see our island! Nope – you want dolphins, dingoes and dugongs, and we can get you there with turtles and all kinds of bird life on a Remote Fraser Tour with Tasman Venture.  And all of this comes wrapped in one of the most beautiful

packages you will ever experience.

 

Snorkel or swim in crystal clear waters with turtles, manta rays and many fish species.  This island specialises in spectacular views and great walks.  Explore ancient sand dunes or walk along kilometres of secluded, white sandy beaches.   A guided kayak tour through Awinya Creek just adds to the peace and that feeling of “now this is life”.  

But, we had you at Fraser Island, didn’t we?

Overnight Hervey Bay or Fraser Island and next day choose either a full day tour of Fraser Island’s beauty spots, Lake McKenzie (Boorangoora or “waters of wisdom” to our Aboriginal people) Central Station, Eli Creek and the Maheno – to do this properly you need at least a day. If your itinerary permits, why not stay longer and really soak up the island atmosphere – we even have another island for you to explore!

Lady Elliot Island

At the very northern tip of Fraser Coast, adjoining the World Heritage Listed Great Barrier Reef, is multi award winning Lady Elliot Island, one of five best spots in the world to swim with giant manta rays! Located within a highly protected Green Zone, this island sanctuary is home to over 1,200 species of marine life and is well known across Australia for its abundance of manta rays, turtle and for its unspoilt and very colourful coral reef. The marine environment around Lady Elliot Island has gone from ‘Great’ to ‘Amazing’!  The diversity, quantity and size of the marine animals are truly remarkable and it’s just getting better with the passage of time.

 

 

For those of you who “can”, the Lady Elliot dive experience should be considered.  And for those of you who “can’t”, why not learn to dive here, on the Great Barrier Reef, with our PADI endorseddiving instructors.

 

 

 

 

No problem if not, you can snorkel on our beautiful reef too – you’ll be rewarded with turtles and mantas, and in season, whales. Oh – and while you’re here, why not try out Lady Elliot’s new glamping experience.  Magical island, beautiful scenery, sleeping under the stars.  Now this is living!

 

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